Brathay 10in10 Athlete
Whenever I have to write something like this I alway want it to be witty, insightful, and possible even thought provoking. Unfortunately, I doubt they ever do! So I guess I need to start with answering the basics: who am I? Where am I from? Why am I here? These are simple questions, which should have simple answers. They are questions I seem to end up answering regularly although this probably makes me sound a bit dazed and confused; my friends and family (especially my wife) might suggest that this is my normal state of being, especially given the last couple of years! I do think many of us have been left feeling a bit dazed, especially if you work, as I do, within the NHS.
So, let’s get the easier questions and answers out of the way. I am Jonathan Carter, I am a 45-year old (that sounds old when written down) from Yorkshire. I am an Advanced Clinical Practitioner working in an Emergency Department and Acute Medical unit in a hospital at the foothills of the Yorkshire Dales. I’ve done a bit of running and I had planned to be a member of the team to complete the event in 2020 and this event would have been my 3rd Brathay 10in10. However, due to the Covid-19 pandemic and then the ramifications for the NHS, work commitments resulted in me withdrawing from the event. So now 2 years later I’m back and I feel like I’ve got some unfinished business with this event. Like many people, the pandemic has had both an emotional and physical effect on me. Apart from actually having the virus, I’ve not been able to train anywhere near the level I would do normally and I’ve developed a little Covid belly. It seems strange coming into the 10in10 on the back of little training. Normally I would compete in a marathon or two every month and as a result, I have clocked up a considerable number of marathons so far, but very few for nearly 2 years! This is the longest time I have gone without running a race for nearly 15 years! Since the pandemic, I’ve really been struggling to get my running mojo back and training has certainly become a lot harder…..
The pandemic has also changed me emotionally as well. I’ve always been someone who felt they were very resilient with good coping mechanisms and support networks. I would have also considered myself to be quite strong internally with a degree of stubbornness. Only when these support networks were reduced and my coping mechanisms stripped away did I realise how important these were to me. Especially when I couldn’t run, I realised that this was a key coping mechanism to me, time out on my own to process my thoughts, feelings and emotions.
As I said this is my third time entering this great event. The first time I entered it was purely for myself - a recognition of a landmark birthday. The second time I entered it was to prove a point that the first one wasn’t a fluke. However, events like the Brathay 10in10 have come to have a different meaning and this is put into perspective when you see people struggling with their daily lives, facing real adversity and having nowhere to turn. That’s where charities like Brathay Trust come in and why they are so important. I think this gives me a whole new perspective on the 10in10 event and why I and the rest of the team are running. For me now it’s not just a need for a physical challenge, the need to complete the events in a time and race against the clock have gone, it’s now about something else………..
- 2016: Brathay 10in10
- 2018: Brathay 10in10
- 2022: Brathay 10in10